SC to pass its order on Khaleda’s bail Monday

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Dhaka, Mar 18: The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court (SC) will pass its decision on Monday on two separate leave to appeal petitions filed against a High Court order granting bail to BNP chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia.

Bangladesh opposition leader and former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia, arrives in the court for her verdict in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018. Bangladesh was on high alert ahead of a verdict Thursday against Zia in a politically sensitive corruption case. (AP Photo/A.M.Ahad)

“Tomorrow(Monday) — for order,” said a four-member Appellate Division bench headed by Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain after a full bench hearing on the petitions moved by Attorney General Mahbubey Alam and Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) counsel Khurshid Alam Khan.

Khaleda’s counsels Khandaker Mahbub Hossain and AJ Mohammad Ali defended begum Zia in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case, reports BSS.

While opposing the High Court order, advocate Khurshid Alam Khan said all the co-accused in the case were sentenced to 10-year imprisonment, while Khaleda was handed down five-year imprisonment considering her age and social status.

“So there is no need to consider her age and social status again for granting her bail,” he said.

Attorney General Mahbubey Alam too referred to different cases while opposing Khaleda’s bail in the case.

He also pleaded to reset the time given by the High Court to prepare the paperbook of the case.

The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court on March 14 stayed till Sunday the High Court order that granted bail to BNP Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia in Zia Orphanage Trust graft case.

A four-member Appellate Division bench headed by Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain passed the order following two appeal petitions filed by the ACC and the state.

“Adjourned till March 18 and stay,” the apex court said, asking the ACC and state to file regular leave to appeal pleas by that day.

The High Court on March 12 granted four-month bail to the BNP chairperson in the case, in which she was sentenced to five years imprisonment.

Following the order, the state and the ACC filed two appeals on March 13, pleading to stay the bail for four months.

On February 8 last, the Dhaka Special Judge Court-5 sentenced Khaleda Zia to five-year imprisonment in the graft case.

It also sentenced other five accused, including Khaleda’s elder son and BNP Senior Vice Chairman Tarique Rahman, to 10-year imprisonment each.

The other persons convicted in the graft case are former lawmaker Kazi Salimul Haque Kamal, businessman Sharfuddin Ahmed, Dr Kamal Uddin Siddiqui and Khaleda’s nephew Mominur Rahman.